Israel’s defense minister during the Lebanon war last year saw a silver lining to its setbacks.
Amir Peretz, whose inexperience in military affairs was underscored by the inconclusive 34-day offensive against Hezbollah in July and August 2006, said Wednesday that he is at peace with his decision to resign in the wake of the conflict.
“The Second Lebanon War will be remembered in the history of Israel as a war that served as a much-needed wake-up call for the military and the state,” Peretz told Army Radio. “If I had to be the one standing at that juncture, then I am paying the price, and I do so without protest and with total acceptance.”
Peretz’s successor as defense minister, retired general and ex-prime minister Ehud Barak, has led a major overhaul of Israel’s armed forces, noting that the future could bring new wars with Iran or Syria.